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 Incontinence & Depression 
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Joined: Mon Jan 15, 2007 10:57 am
Posts: 9
Post Incontinence & Depression
I have two questions that I would like to ask. My first is dealing with my grandmother's loss of control over her bowels. I know that this is a symptom of the dementia, and to be expected.

What I would like to know is, are there any natural (or over the counter) remedies for this problem? Our doctor's don't seem to have any answers so Id thought Id ask here and see if anyone might know something that works.

And just to let anyone who reads this know, Aloe Vera, it comes in pill form in the vitamin section, is a great natural way to take care of a LO's sour stomach. I've been taking it for over a year for indegestion and started giving it to my LO last month for hers and it really helped, it doesn't cause any adverse reactions with any medications.

My second question is in regards to my grandmothers continuing question of why am I only getting worse? I think deep down she knows why, and the family knows why, but how do we answer the question? I keep trying to be positive and say it takes time to heal from injuries (she fell in October and broke her shoulder) but I hate repeating this lie. I know we can't just say everythings going great or even face the truth, but if anyone has any ideas on how to better answer her daily question, that follows with tears, I would love to hear.

Thank you.

Fri Feb 16, 2007 8:51 pm

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 3:43 am
Posts: 215
Location: Seattle, WA
Some people, Cal included, have had good luck with acupuncture for bladder control problems. There are three parts of the nervous system that control continence - the forward part of the brain, the brain stem and the spinal cord, and problems in any one of them can cause incontinence. Traditionally, chinese medicine has used the Kidney 6 point for bladder problems, and, oddly enough, devices that stimulate that spot have been FDA-approved for treating neurogenic bladder. One of them is marketed as URGENT-PC from Uroplasty, Inc.

A urologist can be of assistance here - there's a lot of contributory factors in incontinence, and depending on the root cause, there's various non-drug treatments that are possibilities. If you have access to an academic or referral medical center, it's worth a consult. Urologists in that setting have the most experience in dealing with the medically fragile and those with complex drug regimens.


Cal is not the real name of a real 84 year old with DLB. I don't speak for LBDA, nor do I have clever initials behind my name, so information is provided without warranty. Caveat everybody. I blog at

Sat Feb 17, 2007 1:47 am
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tfritzges said:
I have two questions that I would like to ask. My first is dealing with my grandmother's loss of control over her bowels. I know that this is a symptom of the dementia, and to be expected.

Hi tfritzges,
1. I can't remember the age of your Grandmother but here are some suggestions: Medications and foods can add to the problems, so maybe you could keep a food diary to possibly see if there are a few foods that are creating more problems, you will have to go back to baby stages just like when you are dealing with this in an infant , perhaps timing the problem times watching all foods and amounts of drinks and perhaps getting her into the rest room more because she is not able to tell you when she needs to go. High fiber diet is best.
Due to age she could have damage anal muscles and is just not able to hold it and when this does happen don't use harsh soaps to clean her the soaps change skin PH and then there is skin break down,there are products you can buy to clean her correctly and always make sure she is dry either by patting skin or low blow dryer (this worked best for us ) and always use Barrier creams such as a Zinc Oxide Based.

2. Your Grandmother knows she is sick, there is no tricking her of that but you could say Grandma, you and I both know this is a progressive disease and it is progressing a little at a time and we have to do things to slow the progression.

During the latter months with my Husband he would ask if he was going to die and I always answered yes you are but I don't think today is the day!

I commend you for taking such good care of your Grandmother, this is a big task you took on and just coming here to try and get some hints tells me alot about you as a person, never take on more than one problem at a time.
God Bless!

Sat Feb 17, 2007 9:50 am

Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2007 2:11 am
Posts: 16
Location: Norco, Ca
My grandma's depression kicked in Saturday.It was her worst day.My Mom and Dad went to visit her at the nursing home and she was crying and saying I want to die. I went and saw her yesterday and she was doing somewhat better. She is now bed riden and hooked up to a cathiter because she was retaining fliud in her body.


Mon Jun 25, 2007 6:52 pm
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